Viewport width =
October 12, 2009 | by  | in Opinion | [ssba]

Deep thoughts with Dallas

All good tales have a beginning and an end. And logically, as Agent Smith would say, “The end is inevitable.”

So this tale begins on a beach, after a weekend involving Kat’s 21st and much consumption of goods, services and percentages. The crew is all feeling a tad weary and slightly hungry. One bright fella says (it was his birthday by the way) “I love four-letter words, they are my favourite.” Soon words such as food, dart, slut and skux are mentioned, and we all somehow agree that these words are so very apt for their descriptiveness and expressiveness.

End of Scene One | Scene Two

Words are exchanged between my mate Cam and me over our cellular devices after we had just written a song about a long journey of a weary soul.

We strum, play and are recording and I write the words to the climax of the song…

Keep on walking
Keep on fighting
Keep on trying
Keep on dying

This word in the last line may sound a bit morbid and so easily scapegoated as emo, as opposed to a genuine expression of emotion. But the reality is, folks, that we are dying; we are all dying. Life and death is spoken of as a fifty–fifty thing and we are taught how to live, but are we actually taught how to die? How to face our death? How to even talk about death?

Now, I’m not going to get into notions of afterlife and immortality, because to me that’s like cheating on Mario Bros on Level 1–2 where you just smash through the ceiling and dash over the top of the whole level, with the high-score as the new backdrop to your little plumber legs running away. Finally you do one big jump and you have the option of three green drain pipes that lead to Levels 2, 3 or 4. If you weren’t aware of this nifty 80s trick in Mario then I feel sorry for you having had to face all those unnecessary Goombas. I bet you died…

I’ve digressed a little, back on track. Where were we? Ahhh, dying, that’s right.

End of Scene Two | Scene Three

So, Cam is not that enthralled and feels slightly weird about singing these ‘haunting of humanity’ words and sends me these words in the form of a text:

“Hey man. Just wondering if you wanna change the words ‘keep on dying’ to ‘keep from dying’?”

I replied with these words via email:

Hey man,
I know that ‘keep on dying’ seems negative and ‘keep from dying’ seems positive but I’ll try explain something that I believe I was getting across subconsciously. This one word could mean the difference between ‘let it be’, ‘let me be’ or ‘let this be’. Those little descriptive words can change everything. I believe that we don’t face our own mortality enough Cam, and this coming from the son of a funeral director. Keep on dying seems to have a negative thing, but death is not a negative thing. It’s a part of the journey, as that song is about walking, fighting, trying and then, finally, dying.
Now, this could be the big D we will all face or it could mean the end/death of a chapter or of a cycle. I believe it’s important that, yes, we keep on living. But we also need to keep on dying. Life is all about life and death cycles that occur every day and one day it will be once and for all for everybody. So my vote is for ‘keep on dying’ to communicate the fragility of mankind. It is not a deathwish statement but rather a bittersweet reality, that we all know, deep down, is inevitable. You are dying Cam. I am dying. How then shall we live with the knowledge of this?

Cam emailed back these words:

Aaargh the unavoidable ending to everything!
Yeah man, I can definitely see what you mean. And it’s so real. I feel weird to sing it/look at it but that’s also what makes a great lyric. Well that’s what I’ve been liking lately—not masking stuff in too much imagery and just singing what I mean…. so with that, I concede
Keep on dying Dallas :)

End of Scene Three | Final Scene

Now two souls on a journey faced their own mortality and the inevitability of their own death. And you know what? I’ve found it to be rather liberating. When you can face your own death in the unknown future you begin to be able to embrace your own life in the present. You have awoken from that matrix of just a mind-numbing mere existence.
So in the words of a past great philosopher and dead rockstar who danced close to the flame of his own fragility of life, I leave you with this…

Words dissemble
Words be quick
Words resemble walking sticks
Plant them
They will grow
Watch them waver so
I’ll always be
a word-man
Better than a birdman

Jim Morrison
(December 8, 1943 – July 3, 1971)

This Is the End.


About the Author ()

Comments (1)

Trackback URL / Comments RSS Feed

  1. Hank Scorpio says:

    We strum, play and are recording and I write the words to the climax of the song…

    Keep on walking
    Keep on fighting
    Keep on trying
    Keep on dying


Recent posts

  1. VUW Halls Hiking Fees By 50–80% Next Year
  2. The Stats on Gender Disparities at VUW
  3. Issue 25 – Legacy
  4. Canta Wins Bid for Editorial Independence
  5. RA Speaks Out About Victoria University Hall Death
  6. VUW Hall Death: What We Know So Far
  8. New Normal
  9. Come In, The Door’s Open.
  10. Love in the Time of Face Tattoos

Editor's Pick

Uncomfortable places: skin.

:   Where are you from?  My list was always ready: England, Ireland, Scotland, Wales, puppy dogs’ tails, a little Spanish, maybe German, and—almost as an afterthought—half Samoan. An unwanted fraction.   But you don’t seem like a Samoan. I thought you were [inser

Do you know how to read? Sign up to our Newsletter!

* indicates required